Australia loves-hates Netflix

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Netflix is an online streaming on demand movie content service for a fee. This business has been quite successful, allowing individuals to order specific movie titles of their choice and then watch them at their leisure time. With the service, gone are the days of waiting for a specific time slot for a programmed movie or show. Now, the choice on what to watch is at the fingertips of the audience.

Net Neutrality Rules

This business model?s success has not come without many brickbats. Amongst them is the current debate on ?net neutrality?. According to a report from the Sydney Morning Herald, Optus, one of the largest internet services providers Down Under would undertake a policy of seeking a fee to ensure the quality video streaming services are given.

This was the gist of the speech provided by Optus CEO Allen Lew, during the Australian telco industry?s CommsDay. He said that ?over-the-top content players like Netflix, Stan and Presto should be prepared to pay.?

He added, ?We will continue to preserve net neutrality but we?re talking about the possibility?(of offering) a premium service that we as a network provider can ensure to an (over-the-top) provider if they pay for that premium service. To ensure that the optimized, or the best customer experience, is achieved by the end user we need to make sure that the (over-the-top providers) ? whether they?re Netflix or others ? understand that to preserve the network quality and give you an HD video in the homes, they need to work collaboratively with us.?

The Market Landscape

The Australian online streaming market is currently being dominated by Stan, followed by Netflix AU, then Presto, Foxtel Play and then Quickflix AU, according to Australian online streaming app Gyde. The highest volume of streamable hours was obtained by Stan but Netflix is set on closing the gap in the months to come.

There is a ?group keen on keeping Netflix from the Australian market because of the company?s adamant policy of securing their own content and increased stream demand which would affect the overall supply of bandwidth to the market in general through its own system VPN is? In a report from The Register UK, government along with a number of technology and technical experts are seeking to ban Netflix from Australia.

The following provisions are what make the issue rather thorny. The popular streaming service wants VPN?s, which is essentially closing out Australians from content available to them.

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Image courtesy of Creative Commons.

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